We can ‘beat’ coronavirus with common sense – UN Secretary General

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With the increasing scourge of misinformation, fake news and conspiracy theories out there regarding the fast-spreading Coronavirus pandemic, United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, has advocated for a “common cause for common sense and facts” as a sure way to defeat the COVID-19.

Describing the global pandemic as the most challenging crisis since the Second World War, Mr Guterres stressed that there was the need for people to put a human face to the fight against the Coronavirus.

According to Antonio Guterres resorting to institutions grounded in responsive, responsible, evidence-based governance and leadership for information was a safe bet in the heat of the false spread of news about the pandemic.

He also noted that the phenomenon of misinformation was endemic and called for a united front to battle it as well.

“Around the world, people are scared. They want to know what to do and where to turn for advice.
This is a time for science and solidarity. Yet the global ‘misinfo-demic’ is spreading.

Harmful health advice and snake-oil solutions are proliferating. Falsehoods are filling the airwaves.

Wild conspiracy theories are infecting the Internet. Hatred is going viral, stigmatizing and vilifying people and groups. The world must unite against this disease, too, “he explained.

In a broadcast message copied to www.ghanaweb.com, the UN Secretary-General commended “journalists and others fact-checking the mountain of misleading stories and social media posts,” while adding that there was the need for social media companies to do more to clear the wrong assertions about the COVID-19 being speculated on their platforms.

“Together, let’s reject the lies and nonsense out there,” he added.

The United Nations boss took the opportunity to announce a new United Nations Communications Response initiative to flood the Internet with facts and science to counter the rising spate of misinformation about the Coronavirus.

The global case count of the pandemic stands at 2,018,351 with 128,062 deaths and 492,176 recoveries as of April 15, 2020.
Ghana’s confirmed cases recently surged to 636 with 8 deaths while there was a jump in the number of recoveries, bringing it to 17.

The update was provided by the Ghana Health Service during a press briefing on Tuesday. April 14.

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